Category Archives: Life

Winter storm of 2014

The wooded landscape has been transformed into a winter wonderland..

Irish Settlement Road

Irish Settlement Road

Everything is caked in sparkling snow. As you look closer, you notice the snapped trunks of the red pines, the fallen limbs of the white pines, the birches and beeches that have bent to the ground under the burden of ice and snow. The sky is a threatening grey.

Our neighbor's stand of red pine.

Our neighbor’s stand of red pine.

Our road after the storm

Our road after the storm

Most painful to me is the damage to a relatively healthy elm; most of the top branches have broken, and doubt it can be saved. At least it won’t go to waster; we’ll cut it up and use it to keep warm next winter, maybe during a power outage, when our small wood stove is our only source of heat.

A trunk from my  elm tree came down,

A trunk from my elm tree came down,

Most of the top branches of our lovely elm have snapped.

Most of the top branches of our lovely elm have snapped.

Speaking of power, I’m so grateful to the line crews that have worked for days to restore electric power to our communities, sometimes multiple times. We were without power from Wednesday night through last night, with a couple-hours of service on Thursday afternoon. For three days, we had no central heat, no running water, no phone service, no Internet access! We had our cell phones (not smartphones), but rationed their usage for contacting Green Mountain Power’s outage center, and for emergencies.

Trees on the power lines.

Trees on the power lines.

It was fun to cook creatively on the wood stove, eating down the food that we didn’t want to lose from the fridge and freezer. The pizza dough that Jamie made for Wednesday night turned into flatbread. Sausages and oatmeal, french toast and bacon, we definitely worked the breakfast theme.

I was really intrigued by the way our daily rhythms changed. We went to bed early — 7:30 pm early — feeling very tired, and awoke at 5 or 5:30 and set about getting the wood fire going again. I think there is something restorative about living in a way that reflects the changes in daylight. I know we’re going to return to the work-drive schedule of the modern world, but I may try to be more aware of how the diminished light affects my level of activity.

Now we need to replenish our emergency supplies, and give some thought to ways to work around some of the more difficult parts of this outage.

Listen and Believe – Anita Sarkeesian at XOXO

This video of Anita great talk is making the rounds, and it’s worth a watch.

I was a bit shocked when the video finished, and YouTube presented a collection of “related” videos with titles like “Reason v.s Feminist Frequency” and “The Sarkeesian Conspiracy”. This is the kind of crap that she talks about in the video. Stay strong, Anita.

USS Albacore

Earlier this Spring, Beloved Wife attended a conference in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and NatureBoy and I tagged along. While BW was conferring, the boy and I ourselves busy. In the evenings, we ate out and explored some of the shops in Portsmouth downtown.

One of the things NatureBoy and I did was visit the USS Albacore submarine museum, which comprises a small gift shop and museum, and a self-guided tour of the actual submarine.

The Albacore has two large, offset rudders and twin, counter-rotating propellers for increased speed and power. 

USS Albacore - port side

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